Victor/Victoria

"Excellent"

Victor/Victoria Review


I love musicals, and 1982 saw the release of one of my favorites and another one that haunts me. I'm talking about Blake Edwards' Victor/Victoria and Francis Ford Coppola's One From the Heart.

Coppola's project (it came off his unbelievable string of '70s hits that started with The Godfather and ended with Apocalypse Now) was a technologically adventuresome movie that had one little problem--everything. The songs were bad (Raul Julia and Frederic Forrest sang), the actors appeared to have been fed a diet of sedatives and wine, and there was no cast chemistry or energy provided among the millions of dollars Coppola lavished on this neon turkey.

Victor/Victoria, a remake of a 1933 German film, does just about everything right. The script (which Edwards co-wrote) is breezy and fun; the actors sparkle. Most importantly, the songs are great. It also helps that you have three talented singers in the cast. In fact, some three years after first watching Victor/Victoria I often find myself humming bars from "Le Jazz Hot" or crooning "someday we'll have an airport" in Lesley Ann Warren's ditzy twang. I guess that's still why I'm single.

Anyway, the movie (the good one) takes place in 1930s Paris, where Victoria (Julie Andrews) is struggling to make it as a singer. She meets and befriends Teddy (Robert Preston), a gay nightclub singer, who soon develops an ingenious idea. Why not have Victoria tour clubs as a man, but dressed and singing as a woman?

It sounds preposterous, but Victor/Victoria finds herself/himself the toast of Paris' nightclubs. But life isn't all hotel suites and champagne glasses. A virile American gangster (James Garner) falls in love with the gender-bending singer, starting a whole mess of a trouble and raising questions about his own sexuality.

Garner and Andrews both shine in their roles, but the supporting actors are all splendid. The late Preston tackles his role with a winning mix of foppish charm and wit. His humor comes across naturally, not from his character's sexual background. Alex Karras, possibly the best professional athlete turned actor ever, succeeds as Garner's burly bodyguard and secret admirer. And Warren, as Garner's annoying girlfriend, is a singing, dancing, and comic dynamo. She's also sexy as hell and a great dancer, with her talents on full display in her "Chicago, Illinois" number.

All and all, Victor/Victoria is a vastly entertaining movie, which would explain why it enjoyed so much success when it opened on Broadway several years ago. It's also a reminder of the not-so-distant past: Andrews' prowess as an all-around entertainer, Garner's reputation as your father's George Clooney, and that Karras' acting ability extended beyond punching horses and raising courteous black tots.



Victor/Victoria

Facts and Figures

Run time: 146 mins

In Theaters: Saturday 23rd December 1995

Box Office Worldwide: $28.2M

Production compaines: Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM), Peerford Ltd., Artista Management

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 4 / 5

IMDB: 7.7 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director:

Starring: as Victoria Grant / Count Victor Grezhinski, as King Marchand, as Carroll 'Toddy' Todd, as Norma Cassady, as 'Squash' Bernstein, as Andre Cassell, as Waiter, Malcolm Jamieson as Richard, as Labisse, Matyelock Gibbs as Stella, the receptionist, Sherloque Tanney as Charles Bovin

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

The Party Movie Review

The Party Movie Review

Comedies don't get much darker than this pitch-black British movie, written and directed by Sally...

The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected) Movie Review

The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected) Movie Review

Noah Baumbach (Frances Ha) is on his way to becoming the new Woody Allen, which...

6 Below Movie Review

6 Below Movie Review

Based on an astonishing true survival story, this film is subtitled "Miracle on the Mountain",...

Mother Movie Review

Mother Movie Review

Darren Aronofsky doesn't make fluffy movies, and has only had one genuine misfire (2014's Noah)....

Blade Runner 2049 Movie Review

Blade Runner 2049 Movie Review

It's been 35 years since Ridley Scott's 1982 sci-fi classic, which was set in 2019....

On the Road Movie Review

On the Road Movie Review

Wolf Alice fans are likely to be rather disappointed by this hybrid documentary-drama about the...

Borg/McEnroe Movie Review

Borg/McEnroe Movie Review

Skilfully made by Swedish filmmaker Janus Metz (the award-winning Armadillo), this film is essentially a...

Advertisement
The Glass Castle Movie Review

The Glass Castle Movie Review

There are quite a few terrific moments in this true story, based on the memoir...

Home Again Movie Review

Home Again Movie Review

Reese Witherspoon is so likeable that she can carry even the most hackneyed of romantic...

Brimstone Movie Review

Brimstone Movie Review

An unnerving Western with a sharp female perspective, this film is a series of gruesome...

Kingsman: The Golden Circle Movie Review

Kingsman: The Golden Circle Movie Review

Two years ago, Kingsman: The Secret Service seemed to come out of nowhere, ruffling feathers...

Goodbye Christopher Robin Movie Review

Goodbye Christopher Robin Movie Review

This biopic about Winnie the Pooh author A.A. Milne may look like the usual lushly...

Wind River Movie Review

Wind River Movie Review

After writing the superb Sicario and Hell or High Water, Taylor Sheridan moves back into...

The Vault Movie Review

The Vault Movie Review

Filmmakers Dan Bush and Conal Byrne attempt a mash-up of a frantic heist movie with...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.